A WOMAN is getting fighting fit to give her disabled brother the ultimate gift of life.
Lesley Rhodes, 45, of Salendine Nook, aims to shed nearly two stones and stop smoking, so she is fit enough to donate a kidney to her brother, Mark Weavill.
Mark, 43, of Hillhouse, who has lost the lower part of both legs to diabetes, is on the kidney transplant list.
At the moment he has to have dialysis three times a week.
Lesley, a learning and behaviour co-ordinator at Rawthorpe High School, said: "Mark has been poorly for a while.
"He had his left leg amputated in 2001 and his right leg in 2004.
"A couple of years ago he had renal failure because of his diabetes."
Lesley - who is married to Keith and has a son, Thomas, 17, and stepsons Greg, 18, and Corey, 11 - said that when Mark was put on the kidney donor programme she discovered there was a living donor programme as well.
She added: "I thought about it for about a year and then decided to go for it.
"Mark does really well, but he still has to have dialysis.
"If he gets a new kidney it would free him from that and give him his life back."
Lesley has been for tests at St James's Hospital in Leeds and is now waiting for the results of her latest test to determine if she can give her kidney.
She said: "I get the results about March 9. I'm nervous about it. I just hope I can, because it means so much to me and Mark.
"We are planning on doing a triathlon in May before the operation.
"It will be a case of donor and recipient together.
"We are hoping to raise awareness about the need for kidney donations.
"If more people carried donor cards there would be less need for living donors.
"Mark works part-time as a kitman for Huddersfield Giants. Former captain Ben Roarty, now at the Castleford Tigers, is acting as my personal trainer.
"The Galpharm Stadium staff have also given me a gym membership to help me get into shape.
"To help Mark is great motivation to do this."
Marc Hampshire, Galpharm fitness suite manager, said all the staff were backing Lesley.
He added: "We know Ben from his time at the Giants and his wife runs cheerleading classes here.
"When we heard about Lesley and Mark we wanted to help.
"Lesley could be undergoing major surgery and obviously being healthy will be a big plus, so it's a pleasure to help."
Mark, who also works full-time as a town centre technician for Kirklees Council, said he was taking the process slowly.
He added: "I don't want to go too fast and there is still a long way to go.
"Everybody has been great - my family and my rugby league family.
"It means so much."